Future of manufacturing

Unite delegates call for manufacturing strategy to address the challenges of Brexit and the transition to new technology

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Unite delegate Paul Maullin moved a motion on the future of manufacturing, which included a debate on Brexit, new technology and collective bargaining on the second day of policy conference on Wednesday (July 12).

Conference agreed that manufacturing is facing parallel crises, from the ongoing disruption of Brexit to the transition to low carbon industries.

The motion lambasted the government for having no industrial strategy, instead attacking workers by revoking EU social and employment legislation at the end of this year and grasping at poor trade deals which do nothing for workers.

Conference collectively agreed that the union must adopt a manufacturing strategy that a includes a commitment that every step of the transition to new technologies is negotiated through collective bargaining; that a risk register is established of manufacturing companies most exposed to this transition and the industrial impact of Brexit; and that UK public funding must come with obligations for UK manufacturing.

The strategy should also include support for workers in the wider component supply chain and that there should be an unequivocal rejection of any plans to tear up workers’ rights, social protections or other beneficial legislation derived from EU law, among other demands.

The motion was carried.

By Hajera Blagg

Pic by Mark Thomas